Do you ever want to shut out the needs of others because they outstrip your own resources? That’s how I felt on Monday. I went down to Indianapolis to gather with eighty other pastors and church leaders for our annual conference of the Midwest District of the Christian and Missionary Alliance. I felt spent after Easter with a long list of to-do items and a sea of dandelions growing on my lawn. Meeting with and learning about the struggles of other tired pastors just didn’t feel very appealing! Yet I was bothered by a nagging question, “What would revival look like if ignited across this entire region? What would it look to turnaround not only these churches but this region?” I kept shaking off this nagging question because I have enough to worry about in our own church. Like the disciples in John 6, I was despairing over the inadequacy of my own resources before the needs of so many (John 6:9). Yet what can we do when the needs of others outstrip our own resources?
In John 6, this boy rebukes me. He didn’t focus on the inadequacy of his own resources in the face of great need, but he brings his own limited resources to Jesus in the face of that need. The disciples were busy focusing on the greatness of the need, complaining that “two hundred denarii worth of bread would not be enough for each of them to get a little!” (John 6:7). Yet this one boy brought his lunch to Jesus. Nobody else brought anything else. But this boy brought his lunch, and the crowd is fed.
Jesus just wants us to bring him our lunch. I’m so busy trying to figure out how to fix everybody’s problems, but that is not my job. My job is simply to bring my five loaves and two fish to Jesus. So this morning I did what I could. I prayed. I prayed for the churches, the pastors that I met over the past couple of days. I prayed through the challenges and to-do lists that I have. And this morning I am at my desk, bringing my five loaves and two fish. I just want to do what is needed. I’m crossing off items on my to-do list, one item at a time.
When you feel that needs outstrip resources, simply bring your five loaves and two fish to Jesus. He has power to multiply and feed the five thousand. I have no idea how Jesus will answer my prayers for these other churches. However I am going to keep laying down each of my burdens at the feet of Jesus. Let us not shut out the needs of others because of the inadequacy of our resources, but let us bring these needs with our five loaves and two fish and simply lay them at the feet of Jesus. And let us see what He will do!